Showing posts with label kidnapping. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kidnapping. Show all posts

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Vanishing Trail - The Taking of Jonathan Bishop - Stephen Kosa, Author

Kalamata-Balsamic Chicken with Feta
(A favorite dish of Author Stephen Kosa)

·         4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
·         1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
·         Cooking spray
·         1 cup grape tomatoes, halved 
·         16 pitted kalamata olives, halved
·         3 tablespoons light balsamic vinaigrette
·         3 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
       2 tablespoons small basil leaves 

Sprinkle chicken evenly with pepper.  Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Cook chicken 6 to 7 minutes on each side or until done. Transfer chicken to a serving platter; keep warm.  While chicken cooks, combine tomatoes, olives, and vinaigrette in a medium bowl.  Add tomato mixture to pan; cook 1 to 2 minutes or until tomatoes soften. Spoon over chicken. Top evenly with cheese and basil.

Vanishing Trail - The Taking of Jonathan Bishop - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

His rocking slowed slightly as his mind drifted.  He could still see her, running vigorously along the sandy beach, just paces ahead of her pursuer.  Her feet churned heavily in the thick sand as she struggled to pull ahead.  she gasped for breath while her heart pounded fiercely - her freedom just strides away.  She was young and athletic, but ultimately no match for the swift moves of the former wide receiver from Wisconsin.  with a burst of power he closed the gap between them.  It was inevitable.  He reached for her and with one fluid motion cradled her in his arms as they spilled gently to the ground.  "You run pretty fast for an attorney," she said with a thick Spanish accent, giggling and gasping for breath.  "You're not so bad yourself for a stodgy old museum curator."

A contented silence ensured as they watch the sun slide into the ocean like a giant orange ball melting into a mirror.  He would never forget that day in Peru.  It was a magical day - a day of life, a day of hope, a day of promise.  It was the beginning of their life together, the life they had both dreamed about.  But like so many dreams, reality was certain to trickle in.

He slipped the photograph back into his shirt pocket and headed inside to bed  Tomorrow would bring another long day in court - another act in the seemingly endless theatrical production.

Attorney Jake Bishop's mind seldom strays from his beautiful wife Blanca who had died in a car accident in her home country of Peru while on an archaeological trip.  She left his heart with a void but not before giving him a precious son they named Jonathan after his best friend Professor Jonathan Albright.

Jake's life was drifting along until fate hit again with someone taking his son.  Jake vowed to find him and after months of hopes that didn't pan out he felt that he would never hold his son again.   After the death of Professor Albright and the letter he left, Jake found a new hope that sent him right back where his journey began... Peru.  But not in search for his son but for the possibility that Blanca just might be alive. 

This book is a hard one to put down.  It combines romance, mystery and the black market.  I held my breath in hopes that the woman the Professor wrote about in his letter to Jake would turn out to be his wife.  I crossed my fingers while hoping that he or the FBI would find Jonathan.  And then there was Jake's old girlfriend Maggie from years back who still had strong feelings for him.  That brought questions that I couldn't wait to find answers to.  Will it have a happy ending?  Will the woman be Blanca?  Will they ever find Jonathan?  Will Jake even make it out of Peru alive?   I have to say that the ending of this book took me by surprise, as I think it will you.  I thoroughly enjoyed this book from beginning to end.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Missing Clayton - Bev Irwin, Author

Lemon Cranberry Tea Cookies
(A Bev favorite)


  1. 2 lemons
  2. ¼ cup (50 mL) granulated sugar

Cookie Batter

  1. 1 cup (250 mL) all-purpose flour
  2. ¼ cup (50 mL) whole wheat flour
  3. 1 tsp. (5 mL) ground nutmeg
  4. ¼ tsp. (1 mL) each salt and baking soda
  5. 5 tbsp. (75 mL) margarine
  6. ½ cup (125 mL) granulated sugar
  7. 1 egg white
  8. 3 tbsp. (45 mL) plain yogurt
  9. 1 tsp. (5 mL) vanilla
  10. 3 tbsp. (45 mL) dried cranberries


Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line 1 or 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Finely grate peel from 1 lemon and set aside. Squeeze juice from 2 lemons. You should have about ½ cup (125 mL) of juice. Place juice in a small saucepan and boil until reduced by half. Stir in ¼ cup (50 mL) sugar until dissolved.

In a small bowl, stir flours with nutmeg, salt and baking soda. In a medium bowl, beat margarine with remaining ½ cup (125 mL) sugar and lemon peel until combined. Beat in egg white, yogurt and vanilla (it may appear curdled). Stir in flour mixture just until combined.

Roll dough into 1-inch (2.5 cm) balls and set about 2-inches (5 cm) apart on a baking sheet. Press gently, flattening slightly to form a cookie. Press a cranberry in the centre of each.

Bake, one baking sheet at a time, in centre of the preheated oven until the bottom is golden brown for 7-9 minutes. Place cookies on a rack set over a baking sheet. When cookies are cool enough to handle, dip tops into lemon glaze. When glaze looks dry, re-dip. 

Missing Clayton – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

Clayton awoke to shivers running up and down his body.  The blanket had slipped while he slept, and now, only partially covered him.  The short-sleeved puppy-dog T-shirt he wore left his arms exposed and goose bumps covered the bare area.  He reached out a hand and grasped an edge of the blanket.  It was threadbare; several small holes scattered across its length.  The blanket gave him little warmth in the dampness of the dirt hole.  He pulled the blanket up to his chin and curled himself into a tight ball.  Shivers traveled along his arms and legs.  His body felt like a block of ice, and his forehead felt hot, so hot.

He wanted to go home.  He wanted to be in his own soft bed with his mother tucking the blankets around him, blankets that were thick and warm and had no holes in them.  He wanted his mother hugging him.  More shivers.  Grabbing the edge of the blanket, he tucked it around his limbs.  He shut his eyes.  He wanted to keep them closed.  He tried to go back to sleep.  At least then he didn’t have to think about anything.  He didn’t have to think about why he was here.

What did I do?  Did I do something bad?  Why won’t Mommy come and get me?  Why is she leaving me here?  Why?  Mommy, please come.  I want to go home.

Five-year-old Clayton Kingsley and his mother Jenny have moved to a new home.  Jenny left her abusive husband and obsessive mother and took Clayton to a serene bedroom community that she thought would be the perfect place to raise her son.  At least that was until the day Clayton came up missing.  She had only left him for 5 minutes to go inside and make peanut butter sandwiches for lunch.  Jenny searched every place a child could hide and still no Clayton.  He neighbor Steve took up the hunt but still had no luck finding the child.  Who could have taken him that quickly and left no trace, no clues?

Tyrell was a loner who lived in what could only be described as a shack in the woods.  After high school he had joined the army and served his time but before he left he had met Patty.  They married and had a child and what Tyrell thought would be a happy marriage.  But when he came home after being wounded everything had changed.  Patty had changed.  She was no longer the quiet, mousey girl he had married.  She kept her hair bleached and when she saw the limp from his war injuries, she called him names.  Eventually she took their son and left.  Could he be the one who took Clayton?

Steve the next door neighbor had a police record.  He had helped his friend kidnap the friend’s newborn child when the mother planned to give it up for adoption.  The child’s mother went to one of the police deputies to report the missing child and Steve’s friend ended up being beaten pretty badly and eventually dying.  The deputy who came after the baby later accused Steve of possibly kidnapping another child that came up missing.  And now Clayton is missing.  Coincident?  Could Steve be the one who took Clayton?  He lived close enough to snatch him quickly and without being caught.

Missing Clayton kept me wanting more.  The suspense kept me on the edge in hopes that Jenny would find her child before it was too late.  And when she was taken to the morgue to identify a child's body, it had me holding my breath.  This is an experience that has to be one of the hardest things a parent can do and go through.


Friday, May 10, 2013

Kidnapped by the Cartel - Karen D. Scioscia, Author


Salmon Tacos
(A true favorite!)

For Salmon:
2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 lb. center-cut salmon filet
½ tsp. smoked paprika
½ tsp. all-purpose seasoning
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For Salsa:
5 mini red bell peppers
6 pineapple slices, about 1/2” thick
¼ cup sliced green onions
¼ cup diced red onion
1 dash of lime juice
Chop all and mix together

For “Sour Cream”:
1 cup Greek yogurt
¼ cup mayonnaise
3 cloves garlic, crushed
Juice from ½ a lime
Mix all together

More fixings:
8 cups mixed field greens
Olive Oil
Red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat grill to medium.  Place the salmon on a plate and rub with about 1 Tbsp. olive oil.  Season with the paprika, all-purpose seasoning, salt and pepper.  Cook salmon with skin on.  Remove skin before cutting.  Set aside.

To serve:  Warm tortillas slightly in a pan, cut salmon into strips, add salmon and salsa inside tortilla. Along with the salsa, add in mixed greens, olive oil and red wine vinegar to taste. Add “sour cream” mix.

This is also fantastic with tilapia instead of salmon, and mango instead of pineapple.

 Kidnapped by the Cartel - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish
Day three in hell began with Steve finally falling into a fitful sleep around three o’clock in the morning. He woke up at five. It took almost an entire pot of java to clear his head. He sat at the kitchen table, reviewing the situation. The previous night he had called all of Amanda’s friends listed in their address book, and no one knew anything. Or at least they weren’t saying. Someone has to know something. Other occasions when Amanda had “seemed to vanish,” someone had known where she was. This time, all of the players appeared clueless… Where the hell is Amanda?

Amanda couldn’t believe a stranger had driven away with her car and she’d done nothing. While upset by this, she remained consumed by her desire for drugs. I won’t freak out, Amanda thought, trying to calm herself. These guys said I can get my car back when I want. I’ll just have them take me to my car after I get high… “Where are we going? Amanda murmured, desperate for drugs. She knew she was in bad shape. Neither man answered. They could see that the girl was too messed up for the question to matter… Where the hell is Amanda?

Amanda Tate’s parents Steve and Diane had tried everything to control her addiction to drugs but to no avail. She had been in and out of rehabs only to meet others that could help her score once she got out. When Amanda called Steve asking that he pick her up he knew she was strung out and took her straight to the center only to be turned away because they had a full house. The only option he had was to take her home and guard her well as her body brought itself down from the drugs. He just didn’t count on her slipping out while he and Diane went to the store. And when calls to her cell phone were answered by a Spanish speaking man in Mexico he knew his daughter was in deep trouble.

Kidnapped by the Cartel a parent’s worst nightmare. Author Karen D. Scioscia takes us into the bowels of Tijuana, Mexico where young girls are kidnapped, drugged, tortured and used. We as Americans have always heard about young girls running off to Hollywood only to end up on drugs and becoming prostitutes to support their habits. What we don’t hear about are those that go south and end up in Mexico where drugs are plentiful and free – but for a price. As long as you’re in with the Cartel you can count on only the best drugs to sniff, snort and shoot up. They are hooked so deeply into the drugs that they will do anything to keep them coming. But what if you want out? There is only one way out for these girls and that is by death. Either the drugs will get them, they will serve their use and no longer be useful or they try to run. Either way the end is almost always the same… death.

Amanda’s story is fiction but it is based on a true story and taken from the notes, recollections and interviews of people and agencies involved in an abduction of family member of the author. Even if there was no truth to this story its one that I have no doubt tells the true happenings going on every day within the areas controlled by the Cartel. This is a book that every parent should read and pray that your daughter nor granddaughter is never put into this type of situation. That goes true for your sons and grandsons too because it’s not just the girls that are used but the boys are too.

Monday, February 18, 2013

License to Lie - Terry Ambrose, Author

(A Terry Ambrose Favorite)
3 cups nuts (peanuts, almonds & pecans)
1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/2 cup coconut flakes
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup dried cranberries or cherries
1 cup chocolate chips


1.  Mix together the nuts, sunflower seeds, coconut flakes, raisins and cranberries or cherries.
2.  Spread the mixture on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper.
3.  Melt 1 cup chocolate chips in the microwave.  Pour the chocolate over the baking sheet in ribbons.  Stir to coat everything.
4.  Let the chocolate cool, then break the mix into pieces and pack it in individual containers.
Serves 12

License to Lie – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish
“You lied about not knowing what Richard was upset about. Did it have something to do with Roxy?” The color drained from Tommy’s face. He grabbed the towel he’d hung over his shoulder and began to wipe the bar. “I-I can’t.” “Richard Tanner may be in some sort of trouble. If you know something, tell me. I won’t tell Roxy. This is in confidence between you and me. You don’t have time to think about it Tommy, she’ll be back in a minute.” Tommy let out a deep breath. “Richard never said exactly what he was upset about, just that Roxy lied to him about something.” “That’s it? Come on, there has to be more.” Skip glanced in the direction of the restrooms, no Roxy yet. Tommy grimaced and crossed his arms over his chest. “Don’t lock up on me, Tommy. We don’t have time for niceties.” “Okay, okay. It has something to do with Roxy’s business. She’s got him totally screwed up. He kept saying something about a scam.”
And boy was it ever a scam. One to the tune of almost five million dollars that Roxy Tanner had swindled from some of her rich ‘investors’ with no intentions of investing nor giving back to them. If there was to be an investment, it was to be in her own future sitting on a beach somewhere in a country where she couldn’t be found. But now her father was missing and she needed help finding him. That’s when she spotted Skip Cosgrove on TV after he had found a missing child and returned him to his parents. This just might be the person to help her find her dad. But this theory changed when those responsible for his disappearance demanded five million dollars ransom for his return.
The last person Roxy had trusted was a man that she met when she was 8 years old. She tried to sell him a fake Rolex and it landed her in more trouble than any child that age should face. Now she was faced with actually needing someone to trust. Maybe Skip would be that person. But how does an con artist trust a criminologist that sometimes works as a consultant for the police. How would he react if he found out what she had done and was planning to do? If he got that close she would have to make dismiss him before he turned her in and she ended up spending the rest of her good years in prison instead of on the beach. But boy was Skip hard to get rid of and hard to forget. Skip also found that Roxy was hard to forget, too.
The adventure, excitement and speed of this story kept me on the edge. I wanted Roxy to find her dad, alive and to give the money back to those she scammed but when the money ended up being transferred from her account to the kidnappers I actually felt sorry for her. She would either have to find a way to recover the money or go to jail for sure. There was no running away with enough stashed away to hide forever. I also felt sorry for Skip who by then had fallen hard for Roxy. He knew in his heart that if she did recover the money she would run so with both of them between a rock and a hard place they end up….. Sorry but you’ll have to read the book to see how they ended up. I can promise you that in doing so you’ll go down a road with more curves than straight stretches. This was a good one!

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